While I haven’t actually read a newspaper since I used to pick them up for free at university a few years back, it seems that Rob Ford doesn’t want me to read the Star. Although I half-expected this to be followed with a ringing endorsement like “The Toronto Sun offers a fine selection of quality journalism—plus they endorsed me in my campaign!” he instead said “I have no respect for the Toronto Star whatsoever. If people want to read a paper, pick up the Globe, Post or Sun. That’s what I encourage people to do.”
Apparently, the gravy-train conductor is still butt-hurt over an article the Star wrote during his campaign, which suggested that he was fired as a high-school football coach for going Bob Knight on a player—who now happens to be a solider in the Canadian Forces. Apparently Private Ryan later told “another newspaper” (one that rhymes with Bun, perhaps?) that the coach never laid hands on him, though there’s no denying he got up in his grill. Now Ford wants a front-page apology, though he won’t ask the Star directly anymore. According to his tag-team partner: “You can quote me: if you apologize on the front page, it’s done. You can go to the Supreme Court and try to get Rob to talk to the Star — he won’t talk to you. He just won’t. Until you do it. It’s simple: put that one-liner (apology) in there, it’s over.”
I should probably point out that we’re taught in journalism school that a retraction is typically printed in the same location where an article originally appeared. So unless the football story was front-page news at the time—I couldn’t say either way, though he was more of the “whacky right-wing” candidate last July than future mayor of the city—he wouldn’t get a 40-point, boldface, Sun-style headline begging for forgiveness. Except on this blog.
Is that enough to get John Barber invited back to your next press conference, Mr. Mayor, sir?